TUI’s expectations for summer 2022 in Mallorca
Ian livesey is the head of TUI in the Balearics, Spain, Portugal and Andorra. He looks forward to a happy new year 2022, surprised by “the speed with which we have emerged from the pandemic in recent weeks”. Bookings for summer 2022 are currently positive and, as a group, TUI is hoping to have a summer with numbers close to 2019 levels.
He believes that summer 2022 will be like the other years. “The Balearics will operate under the threat of traditional competing destinations. The key objective is that we must continue to create value, provide good service and offer the islands to all markets and with the same seal of competitiveness.”
Regarding the British market, he underlines that it is essential for the Balearic Islands but that everything will depend on the UK government. “We know the UK restrictions have been tough on travel, and I hope that once people get vaccinated and the pandemic is better under control we can see a recovery in the summer of 2022 It is a very important market for the Balearics.
“Vaccinate, vaccinate and vaccinate. It’s clear that vaccination works and it is very important that all countries in the world vaccinate their populations and also have booster vaccines. We have survived 18 months of the pandemic and we must continue on the same path. “
Looking back on this year’s season, Livesey observes that expectations in May had not been so positive. It was a “acceptable season“from July, given that the first months of the summer season were practically lost. On the basis of the forecasts as they are,” the end of season result has been acceptable “.
Particular credit for this must go to the government of the Balearic Islands and to the hoteliers. “The management of the crisis by the government and the hoteliers was copy. There is no instruction manual for managing the Covid. The Balearic Islands have always been a pioneering destination, and I think we have been able to demonstrate that the islands are indeed a safe destination. “
For hoteliers and tour operators, the pandemic has forced them to adapt – to last minute sales specifically. “Countries have constantly changed travel regulations and customers have generally waited until the last minute to book their vacations. In recent years, companies have invested heavily in digitization systems. This has allowed us to be more efficient and to work better with last minute sales. “
As to low season, he notes that in October TUI had more German customers than in October 2019. This market is also “short term”, but “we continue to engage in Mallorca in winter and look forward to a normal season”.
More generally, it underlines how essential it is air connectivity is for islands, both mainland and European countries. “The most important thing would be to maintain connectivity during the low season months, as this would allow us to offer different types of activities and a different offer during the winter months. This would influence the management of seasonality.”
Next summer is bound to be competitive, so what about prices? “The Covid has shown that there is a lot of desire to travel. Therefore, I don’t mean a price war between competing destinations. Forecasts show that there will be strong demand for next summer. Given this situation, there must be a good business strategy in order to sell the islands well. “